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Why Is It Important To Heal From Trauma? Compound Trauma.


Recovery from trauma is evidence of the resilience and fortitude of the human spirit and the key to leading a meaningful life.

Trauma, including one-time, repeated, multiple, or protracted traumas, has distinct effects on a person. Some people may overtly show signs of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but others will show resilient reactions or transient subclinical symptoms or effects that don't meet diagnostic standards. Trauma's impact might be undetectable, sneaky, or downright destructive. Numerous variables, such as an individual's traits, the nature and qualities of the event(s), developmental processes, the significance of the trauma, and sociocultural factors, all affect how an incident influences a person.

What Do You Know About Trauma?

Trauma can have a devastating psychological impact that might not go away with time. The word "trauma" came from the Greek word for wound or pain. The term "trauma" in psychology refers to an emotionally upsetting, distressing, or disturbing experience that frequently has long-lasting detrimental effects on the brain and other parts of the body (particularly the nervous system). 

An event that stresses beyond a person's psychological capacity to cope is said to cause a traumatic response.

Traumas come in a wide variety of forms, from "large-T" traumas to "small-T" or "micro-traumas." 

Large-T traumas are events that can have an impact on people as individuals, families, groups, and communities. 

these include 

  • Natural disasters like hurricanes, floods, wildfires, or nuclear disasters 

  • Human-caused disasters like fatal car accidents, individual and group violence, and other 

  • One-time traumatic 

 Large-T traumas can also include traumas involving several traumatic occurrences or events that last for an extended period of time.

These events are called "complex traumas," also known as Complex Traumas and Disorders of Severe Stress. Complex, large-T traumas, often known as Type II trauma, include continuous interpersonal violence, long-term physical or sexual abuse of children, perpetual wars, or persistent acts of terrorism.

The types of trauma that many of us experience more frequently are small-t or micro-traumas. While large-T traumas can often be recognized and acknowledged, many micro-traumas, such as being the target of ongoing discrimination based on one's race, religion, gender identity, or sexual orientation, go unrecognized or unacknowledged. 

Other examples of these traumas include 

  • Being stalked, 

  • Living in extreme poverty, 

  • Childbirth, and 

  • Being bullied at school or work. 

These micro-traumas could nonetheless result in significant emotional suffering and life-long harm.

How Do We Respond TO Trauma?

The immediate responses of trauma survivors are complicated and influenced by factors, including their own experiences, the availability of natural supports and healers, their coping mechanisms, the coping mechanisms of their immediate family, and the reactions of the larger community in which they live. 

Even the most acute reactions, despite their variety in severity, are normal reactions to trauma management. Coping methods range from emotionally expressive to reticent, from action-oriented to thoughtful.

Exhaustion, disorientation, melancholy, worry, agitation, numbness, dissociation, bewilderment, bodily arousal, and dampened effects are some of the initial trauma reactions. The primary responses are typical because they are socially acceptable, psychologically helpful, and self-restrictive. Continuous anguish without moments of relative calm or rest, significant dissociation symptoms, and vivid intrusive memories that persist even after returning to safety are signs of more severe reactions. Chronic tiredness, sleep issues, nightmares, dread of recurrence, anxiety centered on flashbacks, despair, and avoidance of feelings can all be signs of delayed responses to trauma.

Individuals may have a variety of different cognitive, emotional, physical, and behavioral repercussions as a result of trauma.

  • Cognitive reactions; include memory issues, inability to focus, poor judgment, a lack of discrimination, and difficulty making decisions.

  • Emotional reactions; The few examples are depression, withdrawal, irritability, flashbacks, extreme terror, helplessness, loss of connection and meaning, generic worry, and specific anxieties.

  • Physical reactions; include stomach aches, chest tightness, headaches, sweating, and psychosomatic problems.

  • Behavioral reactions; include anger, impatience, jolting easily, hypervigilance, sleeplessness, communication problems, and drug, cigarette, or alcohol misuse.


Giving trauma victims a sense of regaining control over their life is the aim of trauma healing. There are three stages that trauma victims pass through as they work their way toward recovery. The stages are 

  • Safety, 

  • Acknowledgment, and 

  • Reconnection  

Minimizing trauma and its repercussions helps to create interconnected, compassionate societies, strong families, and mature individuals.

The majority of programs start by offering a safe environment. Victims will be more willing to open up and share their stories if they feel safe doing so. Recounting the specifics of one's experience can be therapeutic and help the victim integrate those memories into their life story. Discussing the incident with the other person may result in an admission of guilt, an apology, forgiveness, and a renewed connection. Last, participants also receive instruction in active listening, which helps one better comprehend and sympathize with others as well as explain one's own thoughts and feelings. This procedure aids in reestablishing social connections and enables the person to regain their place in society.

Evidence-based therapeutic approaches in trauma management include

  • Prolonged exposure

  • CBT (Cognitive behavioral therapy) 

  • EMDR (Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing)

  • Psychotherapy 

  • Stabilization

Psychological therapies for PTSD have two categories: trauma-focused interventions and non-trauma-focused therapy. The goal of non-trauma-focused methods is to treat PTSD symptoms without particularly addressing the traumatic event and associated memories. In contrast to trauma-focused interventions, which aim to directly address the traumatic event [e.g., eye movement desensitization and reprocessing exposure therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy] (e.g., relaxation and stabilization). For instance, stabilization tries to equip the traumatized individual with the tools necessary to manage intense emotions and the burden of their trauma. 

Pharmacological Interventions: The first-line medication for trauma treatment is a combination of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI). The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of the antidepressants sertraline and paroxetine in adults. Prazosin and clonidine are effective at reducing nightmares brought on by trauma. Trazodone can treat insomnia. Treating PTSD patients with an antipsychotic like risperidone and a typical antidepressant dosage can dramatically improve their prognosis. 


Even while a trauma can have an effect on a person at any stage of life, from fetal development to old age, the impact and the ways of treatment differ based on the individual's developmental requirements and psychosocial environment.


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